Thoughts on my new iPhone

I consider myself pretty tech savvy so people were often surprised to hear/see that I was still using an iPhone 4S that I got in Fall 2011 as my smartphone.

There’s a few reasons for this but the main one is that the phone still worked well enough for the most part and I’m not a huge fan of the planned obsolescence that is built into so many of the devices we use these days (not just technology – everything from appliances to clothing seems designed to not last as long as it should.)

Funny enough, it was that move towards planned obsolescence that probably finalized my decision to get a new phone, something I’ve been thinking about for quite awhile.  But when I read an article that Apple was facing a class action lawsuit for forcing people to upgrade their hardware to run newer versions of their operating system software and, as a result, they’d quietly built something into the latest update (iOS 9.2?) that actually made older phones run faster (quietly because if they admitted this, they’d be admitting guilt in their law suit), I decided that maybe I should upgrade my own iOS, something I’d stopped doing probably a couple major upgrade cycles ago.

But of course, given my crappy old phone, the upgrade got half-way finished then my phone crashed.  When it came back up, the phone went into “Searching” mode but couldn’t find my carrier.  I tried a couple things including a reset and a restore from backup but nothing fixed the issue.  I went to SaskTel to see if a new SIM card would resolve things and that didn’t work either.  So, even though I’d been thinking about it for awhile, I made a fairly spontaneous decision to upgrade.

I also did a couple different things – instead of going for the latest and greatest, I decided last year’s model (iPhone 6 instead of 6S) would be sufficient based on what I’d read of the differences between the two phones.  I’ve also always been a fan of buying as much storage as you can – whether for desktops, laptops or now, smartphones – but again, they only had a 64GB in stock, no 128GBs and knowing I needed to walk out with a working phone, I rationalized both the cost saving and also that my life is increasingly moving to the cloud – most of my music coming via streaming services instead of local on iTunes, photos & videos stored in the cloud and optimized locally, not needing to have as many games apps on my phone since both kids essentially have their own devices now, etc.  So perhaps I could get away with staying with a 64GB model (which is what my old phone had.)

I took the phone home, did a restore from backup and was pleasantly surprised how easy it was and how many settings came over as well (most apps just needed passwords re-entered).  It also realised how many workarounds I’d been doing on my old phone that now worked…

  • Apple Photos never worked properly with my old phone like it did with Shea’s newer iPhone 6 Plus (and Sasha’s new iPad Mini that Santa brought her for that matter)
  • I’d stopped using Bluetooth with my Pebble smartwatch because it seemed to suck my phone battery dead really quickly (although the battery also died relatively quickly, even without bluetooth enabled)
  • the 30-pin connector on the phone was “loose” and had to be connected just so to actually charge the phone
  • I didn’t realise how small the iPhone 4S screen was until I started using the iPhone 6 (I didn’t go for the Plus like Shea did who has basically stopped using anything else and now uses her smartphone as her main computing device)
  • That size has a trade-off and I still miss how the iPhone 4S “fit” into my hand and allowed me to easily reach every corner of it (I’m still not in the habit of using the double-touch feature to shrink the screen to better reach all parts of the screen.)

I’m sure there’s other advantages/disadvantages of the move but overall, very happy with the change and of course wondering why I put it off so long (tight-fisted Scottish heritage may play a *wee* part!) 😉  Of course, if I’d made the jump around Christmas when they were really good deals, I might’ve saved even a few more dollars.

Oh well, I’ll do another post on Boxing Day in 2020 after my next upgrade!

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